self-care in times of chaos

Self-care is world-care.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my role in our collective healing.

Where is the best use of my voice?

What is the best use of my time?

I watch what’s happening in heartbreak and horror and, like you, I wonder what to do, where to be, how to be.

How can I help?

What I know is, we need one another.

We need one another. I think we can feel that. The more things get crazy, the more they seem to spin out of control, the more we recognize that our true allies are standing all around us, men and women as bemused by events as we are, as tired of living in the daily disaster as we are, longing for the firm ground of an honest dissent and a democratic process. Until that crazy gyroscope of power stops spinning, we need one another. We need common sense, strong values, deep listening, honest talk. The counterweight to confusion is community, the balance to chaos is a coherent vision. – Steven Charleston

You belong here.

And you must take care of yourself.

It isn’t selfish or shallow or unloving.

It is necessary.

If you’re feeling worn-out, compromised, anxiety-ridden, or otherwise diminished, this self-care list can help reorient you to wellness:

1. Limit your screen time.

Give yourself a time limit for looking at your newsfeeds. It’s good to be informed. It’s not good to steep yourself in headlines and reactions all day long.

2. Cultivate joy.

Continue to do the things you love to do. Invite a friend out to lunch. Take a picture of a dog sleeping in the sun. It’s okay to smile and laugh and have fun, even in the midst of tragedy. Experiencing and expressing joy doesn’t mean you’re not paying attention to the suffering. Joy heals suffering.

3. Help someone.

Help your neighbor move their trash to the curb, help the young mother who is struggling with her children and her groceries, give way in traffic, call and check on the elderly. Remind yourself that you are not powerless. Remind yourself the world is a loving place by being the love.

4. Connect to your spiritual community.

Find the church or spiritual group where you feel seen, heard, and supported, where you are encouraged to be your best self, where the dignity of all human beings is honored, and spend time there. Engage in ritual with others. Pray with others. Have difficult, important conversations. Turn your attention toward God (Love.)

5. Nourish your body.

Eat nutritious foods. Drink a lot of water. Go for daily walks. Practice yoga. Take salt baths. Get enough sleep. You need to be strong and stable physically in order to be strong and stable emotionally and energetically. Listen to your body and feed it what it needs. This is not a time to numb yourself with food. This is a time to be fiercely alive.

6. Prioritize.

Choose one thing each day that you can do and do it. Make a phone call to your representative, mail a stack of postcards, go to a meeting or march, share an informed article, check in on a hurting neighbor. Keep your focus on your one thing instead of worrying about all the things.

7. Engage your creativity.

Paint, dance, draw, bake – make things. When you engage your creativity, you engage the life force. Get creative every single day and remember who and what you are.

8. Honor your emotions.

Acknowledge how you feel. Cry when you need to cry. Let your emotions flow instead of stuffing them down or ignoring them.

9. Feed your senses.

Light the candles on your dinner table. Arrange fresh flowers. Hang fairy lights in your bedroom. Wear your favorite clothes. Go for a hike in the woods. Remind yourself, the world is beautiful.

10. Look for kindness.

Every day, amid the frightening headlines, there are also stories of goodness and kindness, of people and organizations leading with their heart, helping others, taking a stand for love. Look for those stories and look for the kindness in your daily activities. Notice people helping one another, making eye contact, holding hands.

In thinking about the role I play and what I have to offer, I know that it’s a big part of my mission to help you ignite your creativity and access the sacred feminine within, to understand yourself and your life as sacred, to free your voice, and express yourself with love and authenticity.

Remember, you are beloved.

You are not powerless.

You were born for these times.